Serotonin (5-HT) is an anorectic monoamine and its regulatory effects on feeding are mediated primarily via 5-HT1B-receptors localized in the hypothalamic nuclei, which, apart from the brain stem, are among the most crucial areas of food intake regulation. The distribution of 5-HT1B-receptors in the hypothalamic nuclei was studied in tumor-bearing (TB) rats at the onset of anorexia and in sham-operated control rats, using the peroxidase-anti-peroxidase immunocytochemical method and specific polyclonal antiserum. Semiquantitative image analysis of 5-HT1B-receptor immunostaining was performed on high-resolution digital photomicrographs using the NIH Scion Image analysis program and the data were compared using Student's t-test. Immunostaining detected 5-HT1B-receptor proteins in the same hypothalamic structures in the Controls as in the TB rats. Qualitative and semiquantitative analysis revealed a significant increase in 5-HT1B-receptor expression in the magnocellular neurons of paraventricular and supraoptic hypothalamic nuclei in TB rats versus Controls. In contrast, changes were not significant in the parvocellular portion of paraventricular nucleus or in the lateral hypothalamus including perifornical region. These findings emphasize serotonin's influence on the magnocellular hypothalamic nuclei during developing of cancer anorexia, which is associated with a decrease in food intake.